Lap's One shots & misc - New Entry 4-27-2021

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Re: Lap's One shots & misc - New Entry 8-11-19

Post by Razoredge » Mon Aug 12, 2019 7:51 am

So far, I have to admit, I liked this story. But, I'm a bit agree with Mirage, I don't think that Akira, in my opinion, should act like that, but it's nice to see that others people have their own vision of a character.
Lilly = Akira > Miki = Hanako > Emi > Rin > Shizune

Stuff I'm currently writing : Beyond the haze : A Lilly Satou pseudo-route, Lullaby of an open heart : A Saki pseudo-route & Sakura Blossom : A way with Hisao

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Re: Lap's One shots & misc - New Entry 8-11-19

Post by Scroff » Mon Aug 12, 2019 9:21 am

I enjoyed that very much! Akira explicitly says in Context that she feels like she failed Lilly as a nineteen year old so I can imagine her taking a belt-and-braces approach to Hisao, using her own observations as well as trying to find out what others think of him. Mutou wasn't falling for it though, takes more than a sharp suit to sway an old hand like him!

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Into the Woods - 3-15-2020

Post by Lap » Sun Mar 15, 2020 10:35 pm

Into the Woods

The following post was written in response to Stiles Long's writing contest. Each participant was given a list of KS character pairings and a list of locations. One of each was chosen for this fic.

There were a limited set of options available to participants in the contest and it may be that this fic resembles others. Any such resemblance is coincidental.

___________________________________

Hanako wandered slowly along the path through the woods behind the school, The air was still and oppressive, and even the birds and insects seemed muted. The whole world lay stifled under the late summer heat. The sun’s relentless impact was lessened by the leaves overhead, but the promise—or rather, threat—of its heat could be felt in the random shafts of light that pierced the canopy overhead.

She had left the sweltering dorms for the promise of the shade in the woods, hoping to find some relief on this quiet Sunday afternoon, but relief was not forthcoming. It wasn’t just the heat that oppressed her, but her solitude. In the two weeks since Lilly had left for Scotland, Hanako had come to realize just how fully dependent upon Lilly she had become over the last couple of years. Naomi and Natsume had begun to fill some small parts of the void Lilly had left behind, but Hanako was slowly realizing that there were things that they could not provide her, things she had not even fully realized that she needed. Things she had, most improbably, taken for granted.

I really want a hug, she sighed to herself. It felt cruel, in a way, that Lilly could have reminded her what she was missing, only to take it away. She had survived for years in the orphanage with only occasional hugs from Mama Ando to feed her desire for human contact, so that she had gradually lost—quashed—her desire for more. By and large, contact with other children at the orphanage had been harsh, unpleasant, and undesired. It really hadn’t taken that much effort for her to suppress almost all of her desire for any sort of interaction or physical contact with other people.

At least, until Lilly came into her life. Beautiful, sweet, kind Lilly, who had no idea what Hanako looked like, and so wasn’t repulsed by her. Who had hugged her unreservedly, with genuine warmth and affection.

She was about to turn around and head back to the dorms when she heard an unusual sound. A low soft sound, almost like the sound of someone in pain. But it came, not from the path in front of or behind her, but from the side, off in the woods. Looking into the woods, she could see a small footpath, worn into the dirt by students or wildlife, heading towards a brighter spot that looked like an open meadow a few dozen meters away. She hesitated a moment, then heard the sound again. She didn’t really want to see another person at the moment—unless, somehow, Lilly could be magically transported here—but the thought of abandoning someone who might be hurt was unconscionable.

She stepped off the paved, wheelchair accessible path onto the dirt path leading through the underbrush. “H-hello?” she called out hesitantly, but her voice was swallowed up in the heat and the shrubs. She moved cautiously, not comfortable with such untamed byways.

She heard the sound again, and froze, her face flushing red as she finally recognized it for what it was—not a groan of pain, but of passion. And more than one voice. She wondered who would be making such noises, in an outdoor setting, on such a sweltering day. She knew she should return to the civilized path, take the trail back to her lonely dorm room, leaving the unknown persons to their privacy, but her sexual curiosity warred with her moral sensibilities.

I really shouldn’t...

She bit her lip, and crept toward the clearing. But...as long as I’m careful...no one will know...

Watching her feet for wayward branches—she’d read enough fantasy novels where the hero was given away by stepping on a branch while sneaking up on the bad guys in the woods—she crept slowly forward. The sensual moans grew louder, punctuated by soft wet kissing sounds and throaty sounding chuckles. She saw a flash of white t-shirts though the branches, and slowed down to an even more cautious tiptoe.

She saw a flash of brown skin, and her suspicion as to the identity of one of the people she was...observing...was confirmed when she heard Miki’s voice a moment later. “Slow down there, hot stuff. We gotta get back to practice.”

Some unknown boy responded, sounding breathless and disappointed. “Ah, c’mon, Mik, we can just tell them we went for an extra five kilometers.”

“First off, it’s Miki, not Mik—if you wanna use a nickname, call me Big Sexy.” The boy laughed. “Secondly, I don’t care how hot and heavy we get, we’d never look like we just ran ten K.”

Hanako cautiously poked her head out around a tree that was big enough to conceal her body. Some five meters away were Miki and a boy, both in track uniforms. Miki was leaning back against a tree, and the boy was leaning against her. Their hands were under each other’s shirts, and Hanako suspected that his hands were under Miki’s bra.

Miki gave the boy a quick kiss on the lips, then pushed him away from her, straightening up from her slouch against the tree. He made a disappointed noise, but didn’t press. Miki reached under her shirt to re-adjust her bra, and Hanako swallowed hard as she saw the boy try to reposition the bulge in his track shorts to a less awkward position. Something he was having difficulty with. Miki giggled at his predicament as she reached down the front of her t-shirt to resettle her breasts in her jock bra.

“Come on, ‘Big Sexy,’ you’re not gonna blue-ball me like this, are you?” he asked plaintively.

Miki leaned forward and did something with her mouth on the far side of his neck that Hanako couldn’t see, but which made him—and his erection—jump. “Let’s continue this discussion after dinner tonight. Say, eight o’clock, in your room?”

He nodded vigorously, a wide grin on his face. “Sounds good.” Then his grin faltered. “But...I’ve got a history paper due tomorrow.”

Miki shrugged. “Priorities, dude. You don’t wanna taste of this gorgeous bod, just let me know.”

He closed his eyes, his face scrunched up in what looked like very real pain. “Goddammit,” he muttered. Then he opened his eyes and countered, “How about nine o’clock? I should be able to finish by then.”

Miki scowled. “Well, now I see where I rank in your priorities.”

“C’mon, Miki—” he began to protest, but she cut him off with a laugh.

“I’m just fucking with you, Reiichi. I’ll see ya at nine.”

He flashed her a grateful smile. Hanako noticed that their conversation had served to distract him enough for the tent in his shorts to recede. Mostly.

“You head back to the track first. We don’t wanna arrive at the same time.”

“Yeah, I guess.” He gave his shorts a final adjusting tug, then turned toward the path that Hanako had crept up. She suppressed a squeak of terror, and tried to sidle silently around the tree so he wouldn’t see her as he went by. Fortunately, he seemed as focused on the ground as she had been—one of his legs was a prosthetic, she saw, which would explain his attention to his footing on the woodland path. He passed by her “hiding” spot without looking up, and Hanako breathed a silent sigh of relief. She watched him go, her nerves not bad enough to prevent her from enjoying the view of his broad muscular shoulders, which tapered down to an equally attractive backside.

“Cute ass, huh?” Miki whispered behind her.

Hanako clapped a hand over her mouth to keep from screeching out loud. She spun around to face Miki and almost lost her footing on the uneven ground of tree roots. To her shock, Miki grabbed her arm and wrapped her stump around Hanako’s back to keep her from falling. “Hey, shhh, ‘sallright,” she muttered quietly.

Reiichi arrived at the paved path, and began jogging away.

“M-m-m-m-m—“ Hanako stammered, her shock and embarrassment rendering her speech-locked. Her face was flaming red with shame at having been caught spying on the amorous couple.

“Miki, yeah, that’s me,” said Miki cheerfully.

Hanako was bewildered by the fact that Miki didn’t seem to be offended or upset to find a peeping Tom had been observing her. She gave up on trying to say Miki’s name, and took a shuddering breath to calm herself.

“Did’ja like the show?” Miki asked with a grin. “How much did you see?”

Hanako just stared back at Miki, unable to form a coherent answer to the unexpected question. She was sufficiently disconcerted that it took her a long moment to realize that Miki had not let go of her after grabbing her to keep her from falling. Having realized it, she found she didn’t really want to pull away. It was the most human contact she’d had since Lilly had left. “I...I’m sorry,” she eventually managed to say.

“For what? Watching?” Miki shrugged before Hanako could even respond. “Doesn’t bother me. It’s kinda sexy, actually.”

“Oh.” Hanako’s heartbeat slowed and her blush faded as Miki’s words sank in. It seemed like she wasn’t going to get yelled at, or shamed, or beat up. “Th-thank you.”

Miki laughed, and finally let go of Hanako. Hanako repressed a whimper of disappointment. “For what? The show?”

Hanako shook her head. “For not getting...angry.”

“Eh. I got a fair bit of education watching my brother in the hayloft with the neighbor girl. This is just turnabout, fair play and all that, right?”

Hanako blinked at that notion. “I d-didn’t see...much. Really. Less than...a minute or so.”

“Your loss. Reiichi is a good kisser, you might have learned something.”

Hanako grimaced. “N-not that I’ll ever...need to know how to k-kiss,” she muttered.

“Aww, don’t say that. You’re real pretty. Someone’ll kiss you someday.”

Hanako gave Miki a flat stare. “Pretty. Me.” She waved her hand at the right side of her face. Apparently she was going to get mocked after all.

Miki rolled her eyes. “Yeah, you got scars. So what? So does practically everyone else, they’re just more obvious here at Yamaku. You’re really pretty.”

“R-right,” Hanako muttered, and turned to leave before Miki could mock her more.

“Wait—” Miki grabbed Hanako’s wrist, cutting off her escape. “Wait, I know you think I’m bullshitting you, but I’m not.”

Hanako jerked against Miki’s grip, but it was like an iron vise. She tried to glare at Miki for restraining her, but she didn’t have the nerve to maintain eye contact for more than a split second before looking down at the ground. She hid behind her hair, annoyed at herself for her weakness and cowardice.

But Miki loosened her grip on Hanako’s wrist, and moved it to her bicep, less a restraining gesture and more one of friendliness. “Listen, Hana, I don’t bullshit—”

“Hanako,” Hanako blurted out. No one had called her Hana since before. She flicked a glance up at Miki before looking back down at the ground. She echoed Miki’s words: “If you w-want to use...a nickname, call me...Big Ugly.”

“Fuck that shit,” said Miki, startling Hanako into looking back up at her. Miki was scowling at her. “The only thing ugly about you is that attitude.”

Hanako cringed in the face of Miki’s anger. “S-s-sorry.”

“For what?” Miki demanded, sounding exasperated.

Hanako floundered for a reason. It was practically an instinctive reaction for her to apologize when someone around her was angry. “For...upsetting you?”

Miki released Hanako’s arm to bury her face in her hand. She raised her stump too, as if to bury her face in both hands.“Ah, shit, girl. That’s not what you need to apologize for,” she muttered into her hand.

“S-sorry,” Hanako repeated.

Miki dropped her hand and stump to glare at Hanako. “Gah! And it’s not me you need to apologize to—it’s you.”

“Wh-what?” Hanako was torn between the desire to flee this weird situation, and fear that if she did, Miki might get even more angry with her.

“Hanako...” Miki sounded weary as she stared at her. Hanako couldn’t maintain eye contact with Miki for long, but she kept flicking little glances at her, wondering what, exactly, Miki was going on about. Miki rubbed the back of her head and shook her head. “Goddammit, I’m not good at this touchy-feely shit,” she muttered.

Hanako was glancing up at Miki when her expression changed from annoyance to…something different. Something softer, that Hanako didn’t recognize.

Before Hanako could decipher Miki’s expression, Miki muttered softly, “Ah, fuck it,” and wrapped her arms around Hanako, pulling her into a hug.

Hanako froze, petrified, half expecting some sort of attack, but the only assault coming from Miki was the smell of her sweat. Fresh sweat, and surprisingly not unpleasant. A slightly musky, warm animal smell, that seemed perfectly suited to Miki.

She felt like they stood there like that for several subjective hours before she could believe that Miki’s actions were benign. Slowly, hesitantly, Hanako raised her arms in turn, to embrace Miki back.

She forced herself to hold onto Miki gently, so that Miki could escape her if she came to her senses, although she wanted to cling to her with all her might, to keep her close. She bowed her head and rested it gently on Miki’s shoulder. It felt a little odd to be hugging someone shorter than Lilly, but it was still good.

“I dunno what’s going on with you,” Miki said softly. “But you looked like you could use a hug.”

Hanako nodded against Miki’s shoulder. “Yes,” she whispered. “Thank you.”

Miki chuckled, and squeezed her a little tighter for a moment. “No prob.”

After a minute that felt like forever and yet was too short, Miki loosened her hold on Hanako, and Hanako did likewise, taking a step back away from Miki. She tried to surreptitiously wipe her eyes on her sleeve. “Th-thanks.”

Miki nodded and smiled awkwardly. “Yeah, well…I’m not so good at the talky-feely stuff, but I’m always good for something more physical.” Her smile became more cheerfully licentious as she added, “But I’m already booked for tonight.”

Hanako blushed and nodded. “So I…heard.”

Miki laughed and said, “Yeah, his ass isn’t his only sterling quality,” which only increased Hanako’s blush as she pictured Reiichi walking away from her again.

“Listen, I gotta get back to practice, or Gentaro’ll give me more punishment laps.” Miki started walking down the woodland path to the main path. Hanako followed silently. When they got to the paved path, Miki stopped and did a few brief stretches, which Hanako watched, envious of the other woman’s strength and flexibility.

“D’you like anime?” Miki asked, apropos of nothing that Hanako could apprehend.

“Um…some?”

“Well, I’m busy tonight, but d’you wanna swing by my room tomorrow night and watch Minami-ke?”

That was not an anime that Hanako would have predicted that Miki would like; far too cutesy and girly. But she didn’t want to offend, so she said, “Th-that sounds…fun.”

“Cool.” Miki grinned. “And I can tell you all about how my meet-up with Reiichi went.”

Hanako’s blush returned. “Ah…th-that’s…”

“See ya!” Miki turned and took off running toward school at an easy lope. Hanako stared at her retreating form for a long moment, bemused by their encounter and interactions. How had she gotten from voyeurism to watching anime?

Well…at least I got a hug out of it. She smiled to herself. A hug from a very unexpected source, true, but maybe, just maybe, something more might come of it. She started back to school too, at a more sedate pace than Miki’s, and found herself humming the Minami-ke theme song under her breath as she went.
Last edited by Lap on Mon Mar 16, 2020 3:03 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Scarred Muse Hanako and Rin.
Avenues of Communication: Shizune suffers an accident.
Home: Hanako & Hisao at University, sharing an apartment with their friend Lilly (on Ao3).
One-shots

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Scroff
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Re: Lap's One shots & misc - New Entry 3-15-2020

Post by Scroff » Mon Mar 16, 2020 11:04 am

Ahhhhh I didn't realise how much I needed this story until I read it! I particularly like how it is in your Arrival continuity, it feels very true to the Hanako there.

Wonderfully done, thank you so much!

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Re: Lap's One shots & misc - New Entry 3-15-2020

Post by Hanako Fancopter » Mon Mar 16, 2020 8:05 pm

"big ugly" made me laugh out loud

I love the idea of Miki giving Hanako some rough love. Really, any pairing with Hanako I tend to be pretty biased in favor of, but Miki in particular makes for a pleasant contrast.
An Unusual Friendship (Misha x Hanako Route)
Riposte (Rika Mini-Route)
One-Shots Thread (Random Smut/Meme Stories)

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Re: Lap's One shots & misc - New Entry 3-15-2020

Post by Mirage_GSM » Thu Apr 02, 2020 5:12 pm

Short and to the point. Very good in all.
The "Big Ugly" was a fun callback - I doubt Hanako woul have thought of that at that point, but that's just a nitpick.
Emi > Misha > Hanako > Lilly > Rin > Shizune

My collected KS-Fan Fictions: Mirage's Myths
griffon8 wrote:Kosher, just because sex is your answer to everything doesn't mean that sex is the answer to everything.
Sore wa himitsu desu.

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Let it Snow, for Psychic Spy

Post by Lap » Wed Dec 30, 2020 7:01 pm

Let it Snow

SXI Entry for PsychicSpy! Hey, at least I managed to get it in before the end of the year :D !

Thanks, as always, to Feurox for beta-reading. Hopefully I didn't give him diabetes this time 'round...

______________________________


“Hey,” Taro said, interrupting my reading.

“What?” I asked absently as I turned a page in my astronomy book. I was curled up next to him, resting my head on his chest. One advantage to dating a big guy was I always had a soft place to rest my head.

“I was wondering, what kind of Christmas celebrations do you do?”

I put my book down, and twisted my neck to look up at his face. From this angle, it was an unflattering view up his nostrils, so I sat up. I didn’t have my legs on, so I had to prop myself up to do so. “Nothing, really, since Dad was Hindu and Mom is Shinto. I’m kinda Shinto by default, I guess.”

He waved his hand dismissively. “I don’t mean, like, religiously. Christmas is a romantic holiday in Japan.”

My mouth twitched, as I began to get the drift of what he was asking about. “And I’ve never had anyone to share that romance with.”

“Until now?” he asked, suddenly sounding a little unsure of himself.

I stretched up and gave him a brief kiss. “Until now,” I agreed. “This will be the first.” Taro wasn’t the first guy I’d ever dated, but it was the first time I’d ever had a boyfriend at Christmas time.

“So, um…” He ducked his head a little, suddenly looking shy. He was so damn cute I wanted to climb on top of him and kiss the living daylights out of him, but I restrained myself. Not only was it daytime, and I could hear other people in the dorm around us, but I also wanted to hear what he had to say. “I was hoping, maybe you might want to spend Christmas…with me?” His blushing smile was both hopeful and diffident.

I briefly considered teasing him, stretching this out a little longer, but he looked so earnest that I couldn’t bring myself to do that. He was still a little insecure in our relationship, for some reason not quite believing that I found him attractive. Guys get too hung up on looks. “I’d like that,” I said with a smile.

His eyes lit up. “Really?”

I laughed, and kissed him again. “Yeah, of course, doofus. Who else would I spend it with other than my boyfriend?”

He pulled me into a hug with his good arm and I fell onto his chest. Not that I was resisting all that hard. “Your boyfriend,” he murmured happily.

I wrapped my arms around him and kissed the side of his neck, earning a shudder from him. “Yeah, you’re my boyfriend,” I repeated, since he seemed to like hearing it so much. “Which means I’m your girlfriend, too, you know.”

“I know. It’s just…I still can’t believe it.”

“Silly man,” I said fondly. I snuggled into his warm bulk, enjoying the solid presence underneath me, supporting me. “So, what did you have in mind?”

“Um…I…hadn’t thought that far ahead,” he admitted wryly.

“You’re going to make me figure it out?” I asked, mock-offended.

“I’ve got couple of weeks!”

“And if we’re going to do a special dinner or something, you’d better make reservations yesterday. Things fill up fast this time of year.” Restaurant dates were kind of a given with Taro, foodie that he was. I’d been to more local restaurants during the past six months that we’d been dating than I had in the prior couple of years that I’d been at Yamaku.

“Oh. Right. I hadn’t thought of that. Where would you like to go?”

I shook my head and burrowed in against him more, feeling warm and cozy. “You invited me. You decide. Is there someplace we haven’t tried yet that you really want to go to?”

“Hmm.” He was silent for a few moments, and I closed my eyes, relaxing. A nap in the middle of a Sunday afternoon sounded ridiculously sybaritic, but also so very inviting at the moment.

“I’ll give it some thought,” he said.

“Mmmkay,” I murmured. I took a deep breath, enjoying the scent of him, and relaxed further into his embrace.

“Molly? Are you awake?”

“Mmm…”


______________________________


Two weeks later, I found myself wishing I’d given into my impulse to ravish him with kisses instead of napping, because end-of-term exam hell kept us from more than an occasional peck or two here and there in passing. We studied together, but that wasn’t nearly the same thing, especially since half the time we also had Lelouch and/or Suzu studying with us. Even Miki joined us a few times, in a rare display of academic focus. Or perhaps more accurately, desperation.

But at long last, exams were all over. Saturday after classes, I staggered back to my dorm room more literally than usual, my exhaustion affecting my balance. I collapsed onto my bed, gracelessly shucked off my legs, and fell into a deep and exhausted sleep.

I was awakened several hours later by a knocking at my door. I groaned and rubbed at my sticky eyes. “Whozit?” I called out. I glanced at my bedside clock—it was a little after six.

“Taro. You awake?”

I sighed. “I am now. Come on in.” I propped myself up on an elbow and tried to look awake. Or at least cutely disheveled.

Thankfully, I’d been too out of it to bother locking the door behind me when I’d returned to my room. He stepped into the room and smiled when he saw me. “Hey, Molly.”

“Hi.” I tried to give him a warm smile, an attempt which was foiled by a jaw-cracking yawn. “Sorry,” I mumbled. I patted the bed next to me. “C’mere.”

He closed the door behind him and came over to the bed. He bent over to give me a kiss. Feeling all too aware of my morning breath (afternoon breath?), I kept the kiss brief and closed-mouth. He smiled, and sat at the foot of my bed, on the third of it I never used. “How’re you doing?” he asked.

I ran a hand over my hair and grimaced as I realized one of my braids had come undone while I slept. “I must look a right proper mess,” I muttered, a little embarrassed to be seen in such a state.

“You’re always beautiful to me,” Taro said with a sappy smile.

I snorted, and pushed myself up into a sitting position. I turned so I could lean against the wall. “You’re so corny. Maybe you need to transfer to 3-2.”

He shifted sideways a little, to get closer to me, and I leaned against his side. “Nope, I see you perfectly fine.” I started to nestle into his side, but he pushed me back upright. “Oh, no, no, no. No going back to sleep, it’s dinner time.”

I groaned as I sat up. “I’ll trade you my dinner for an extra six hours of sleep.”

“Did Suzu swap places with you while I wasn’t looking?”

I punched him lightly on the shoulder. “It’s not unreasonable to be sleepy after exam week.” I stifled another yawn. “How are you even awake? You were studying just as late as I was.”

He shrugged. “It’s dinner time.”

“Ah. Gotta keep my mighty beast fed.” I rubbed my eyes, trying to force them open. “How’d you do on your exams?”

He shrugged. “Eh. Pretty sure I passed everything, but that’s about it. I only have confidence in the science and math tests because you helped me out so much.”

“Always happy to help.” Science was my forte, though this term’s exam was on chemistry, not astronomy, alas.

I ran my fingers through my loose hair and considered redoing my braid. I looked around my bed but couldn’t find the hair tie that had fallen out, then gave up and undid my other braid. With that hair tie, I pulled my hair back into a quick and simple ponytail.

“Aww, I like you with your hair down,” Taro said.

I snorted. “Conditioned response.”

“Pardon?”

“The only time you see me with my hair down is while we’re making love. Of course you like seeing it down.” He blushed, and I giggled at his response. “Can you hand me my sleeves and legs?”

“Sure.”

At least I’d had the presence of mind to drop the silicone sleeves I wore on my stumps onto the desk before I’d collapsed. Dropping them on the floor was an invitation to spending ten minutes picking lint and hair off of them before putting them back on. Really, I should wash them first, but I was too lethargic to worry about such niceties just then. I quickly slathered lotion onto my legs, rolled the sleeves on, then pulled on my prosthetics. Taro gave me a hand up and held my arm as I shifted from side-to-side, settling myself into the sockets.

“Everything in place?” he asked.

I nodded, and took a careful step toward the door. Everything worked fine, so I walked over and grabbed my coat off the hook by the door. “Come on, big guy, let’s eat.”

As we exited the dorm, a gust of cold wind took my breath away, and I hastily zipped up my coat. “Geez, it’s dropped ten degrees since noon.”

“Yeah, and it’s supposed to get colder. Heard someone say we might even get snow in the next few days.”

“That’d be fun. I’ve never seen snow.”

“What do you mean, you’ve never seen snow?” Taro asked.

“Well, I mean I’ve seen it, of course, on TV or in movies. Just not, y’know, in person.”

“Huh.”

“How about you?”

Taro shrugged. “I’ve seen a few snowfalls, but not many. It mostly only ever got cold and rainy back home. I hope we get to see it together.”

“Me, too.”

Famous last words, I thought.


______________________________


I’d managed to convince my mother to let me stay at Yamaku for a few days after exams so I could spend Christmas with Taro. She didn’t need to know what I’d heard through the grapevine about how lax the dorm security was during break. It seemed like we weren’t the only couple taking a few days for romance before returning to our families. I’d wondered if the staff had any idea of what would be going on, but when I visited Nurse for a pre-vacation checkup, I found a large fish-bowl full of condoms sitting on a table outside his office. I blushed to see that, but that didn’t keep me from discreetly pocketing a few for myself. Better to be prepared.

By Christmas day I’d managed to catch up on both my sleep and my kiss deprivation. Nurse’s extra supplies had come in handy.

“So, where are we going for dinner tonight?” I asked Taro as we cuddled together in his bed. My bed was too small for the both of us, but he had a larger-than-average bed, to go with his larger-than-average size.

“A place I heard about from Hisao, with European cuisine. Apparently he and Lilly went there a couple of months back. He said it was very nice.”

“How nice is ‘very’ nice?” I asked.

“Well, you’ll get to see me in a jacket and a tie.”

“Hmm. I think I know just what to wear.” I had a lovely formal dress in my closet that I’d never had the occasion to wear since coming to Yamaku.

“I like what you’re wearing now,” he said, somewhat predictably.

I rolled my eyes. “I don’t think they’ll let me into the restaurant naked. To say nothing of freezing my kahookies off on the way there.”

“Kahookies? What are those?” he asked, amused.

“You were just admiring them just a little while ago.”

“Given that I was admiring all of you, that doesn’t really narrow it down.”

“Either way, you don’t want me to freeze them off.”

“I suppose not,” he conceded.

“Will there be much walking?” I asked. I hoped I wouldn’t need to bring my crutches, but if we had to climb back uphill to Yamaku afterwards, I would.

“No, I’ve already called a taxi to pick us up at six. We have a reservation for six thirty.”

I glanced at the bedside clock. “Then I should start getting dressed.”

“Already?”

“It takes me longer than you. I can’t just throw on a suit and call it good, I need to do my hair and makeup.”

“Makeup’s just gilding the lily.”

I kissed his cheek. “You’re sweet.” I sniffed, then wrinkled my nose. “Also, I think we both need to take showers first, if we’re going out in public.”

“I suppose.”

I threw back the covers and slid over to the side of the bed. I shivered to be out from under the cozy warm blanket, away from my cuddly space heater. I quickly donned my legs so I could stand up and fetch my clothing, which was scattered around the room.

Taro sat up and pulled on a t-shirt which was draped across his bedpost. “Aww. It’s the saddest part of the day.”

“Huh?”

“When you put your clothes on.”

I laughed as I dressed. “You are so corny.”

He gave me a sheepish looking smile. “Sorry.”

I shook my head as I leaned over to give him another kiss. “Corny, and I love you for it.”

He blushed nicely. I pulled on my blouse and buttoned up, and pulled my hair back into a ponytail. “Shall I meet you in front of this dorm a little before six?”

“Sounds good.”


______________________________


Taro must have been waiting for me just inside the door, because he stepped out of the guys’ dorm before I had to mount the steps. Thoughtful as always. I smiled in appreciation as he approached. “You dress up nice,” I said admiringly. The suit was cut to make him look more impressively barrel-chested than rotund. He even had a nicer sling than usual, in dark red, which worked surprisingly well against his black suit. He blushed at my compliment, which just made him look even cuter.

“And you look beautiful as always,” he replied as he offered me his good arm.

I smirked. “Just wait till you see the rest of my outfit.” Unfortunately, I had to wear a long winter coat over my dress lest I freeze my aforementioned kahookies, but I looked forward seeing Taro’s reaction when I doffed my coat at the restaurant.

We walked to the front gate of the school, where I could see a taxi already waiting. Taro gallantly opened my door for me, then helped me lift my legs into the car. “Thanks.” It had taken me a while to get used to having him do that for me, but I had to admit it was easier.

He slid into the other side of the back seat, and we took off. I glanced out the window as we left Yamaku, and was surprised to see a few snow flakes in the air. “Hey, look!” I exclaimed, pointing out the window.

“Oh, wow. I guess we’re getting a white Christmas after all.”

“Yeah.” I leaned against Taro and looked out the window at the snowfall, enjoying the new experience. It was pretty to look at.

The snowfall got denser and denser over the course of the twenty minute drive, to the point where it was actually accumulating a bit by the time we got to the restaurant. The streets and the sidewalks were painted white, and the streetlights looked lovely seen through the falling snow.

As I opened my car door, Taro said, “Wait a second for me to give you my arm. It looks slippery out there.”

I looked dubiously at the fraction of a centimeter of snow on the ground. “Really?” It didn’t seem like there was enough snow to be a problem, though admittedly I had no experience with it.

“Trust me.”

Given that my stability was always a little suspect, I decided to heed his advice. I pivoted my legs out of the car and waited for him to pay the driver then walk around to my side. “M’lady,” he said, offering me his good hand with a smile.

“Why, thank you, m’lord,” I replied, and pulled myself to my feet. I held onto his arm and closed the car door behind me, then took a hesitant step. “Doesn’t seem too bad,” I said.

“Well, better safe than sorry.”

The ground felt a little slick underfoot, but nothing untoward happened until we got to the steps leading to the restaurant door. Stairs, my eternal nemesis. I grimaced and held on tighter to Taro’s arm as we climbed the three short steps. I knew he was used to how I had to kick-waddle my way up the steps, but I still felt graceless, and pushed a little faster than usual to get it over with.

Which was probably why I skidded sideways at the top of the last step. I yipped in surprise and grabbed Taro with my other hand, hoping I wasn’t going to pull us both down in a heap. Thankfully, the fact that I massed about a quarter of what he did worked in our favor, and we stayed upright.

The door to the restaurant burst open and an embarrassed looking waiter or maître d’ hurried out. “Miss! Are you all right? I’m so so sorry, we shall clean these steps immediately!”

I let go of Taro with my second hand and stood up straighter, and smiled reassuringly at the man. “Thank you, I’m fine.”

He held the door open for us, still apologizing, and we entered the restaurant.

The door closed behind us, enveloping us in welcome warmth, and I looked around curiously. The restaurant was dim, with candles on each table, and the walls were covered in dark red patterned wallpaper. Everyone looked at least as dressed up as we were, if not moreso, and the scents coming from the food were tantalizing. I glanced at Taro, who was subtly taking a deep breath through his nose and looking happy.

“I’d heard good things about this place. Smells like it’s going to live up to its reputation,” he said, sounding satisfied.

I unzipped my coat and slid it off. “Could you give this to the coat check?” I asked, holding it out to him. His reaction was all I could have hoped, as his jaw almost hit the ground.

“Wow. Molly, you look…wow.” He took my coat by reflex, staring me up and down.

I giggled at his sudden paucity of vocabulary. I lifted my arms to the sides to display the embroidery and trim on my dress to full effect. It was a one-of-a-kind burgundy number that my mother and I had sewn together, mixing our family traditions—the cut was basically a Nivi sari, but the cloth and trim were traditional Japanese floral prints, like you’d see on a yukata. It was long, which hid my legs from gawkers, but it was also loose and flowing enough that I didn’t get caught up in it and trip. Mostly. “You like?”

“Um. Yeah.” He ducked his head, looking bashful, and said quietly, “I feel so lucky. I’ve got the loveliest girl in the whole world.”

I blushed a little at his hyperbole, but enjoyed it nonetheless. “Thank you. And I’ve got the sweetest guy in the world.” I took his arm and smiled up at him. The coat-check lady took my coat from him, and we followed a waiter to our seats.

The menu was an interesting mixture of European and Japanese cuisine, with some of the descriptions in English or French, which I thought was kind of rudely intimidating. Fortunately, my beloved giant of a foodie was familiar with culinary terms in at least six languages that I knew of, so I just let him order for us. He knew my tastes well enough that I trusted him to choose well. The waiter was pleasantly unfazed by Taro’s request that all his food be cut into bite-sized pieces. Apparently the customer really was always right at this establishment.

Meal ordered, we sat back and smiled at each other across the table. “So, Molly—” he began.

“I have—” I said at the same time, then we both stopped.

“After you,” he said gallantly.

“Okay. I was just going to say, I have a little present for you. Do you want to wait until after dinner, or would you like it now?”

He smiled broadly. “I was about to ask something similar.”

“What a surprise. Should we do it now?”

He glanced around, as if checking for our waiter, then nodded. “I think we’ve got a few minutes before the appetizers arrive.” He reached into his jacket pocket, and I reached into my purse, and we placed similarly sized boxes on the table.

“Merry Christmas,” we both said, then laughed. We exchanged boxes.

“You first. It’s not terribly romantic,” I warned him defensively, “But I hope you’ll like it.”

“I’m sure I’ll love it.” He picked up the box and tucked it between his bad arm and his body to hold it still while he ripped the paper off of it.

Inside was a high-end digital food thermometer. I’d been somewhat taken aback by the price of it, but the clerk at the cooking wares store had assured me it was one of the most popular among professional chefs. “Oh, wow, this is great!” Taro beamed, apparently sincerely, which reassured me. “Thank you, Molly.”

“You’re welcome. I hope you use it to cook us many meals in years to come.”

He blinked at that, and his eyes misted over a little. “Yeah,” he said, a little hoarsely. “I hope so, too.”

We beamed at each other sappily for a few moments, then Taro pointed to my package. “Your turn. I hope you like it, too.”

I eagerly tore into the box, which turned out to be a jewelry box, not a kitchen utensil. I prised it open, and found a lovely golden necklace inside. The pendant was a triangular fan of dark gray metal, with a dark blue stone at the top vertex. It took me a minute to recognize the slashed designs on the dark metal as Widmanstatten patterns, then I looked up at Taro, startled. “Is that…a meteorite?”

He nodded, his smile uncertain. I laughed, delighted. “How perfect! Thank you, love.”

The uncertainty faded from his face, and he beamed back at me. “I’m glad you like it.”

“How could I not?” I asked. I pulled the chain out of the box, and reached behind my neck to put it on. I settled it into place on my throat. “How does it look?”

“On you? Heavenly.”

I giggled. He was leaning into the corny compliments today, but I really didn’t mind. It was part of his charm.

Dinner lived up to our expectations, and the evening passed in a warm, happy blur. In only a couple of short hours, we were stuffed to repletion and ready to leave. Taro retrieved my coat, and held out his arm for me as we exited the restaurant.

“Thank you, sweetie. That was a wonderful meal.”

“One of the best,” he agreed happily.

We walked down the now-shoveled steps, and I looked around. The street was glittering, looking brighter for its coating of white snow reflecting the streetlights. I ran my hand along the edge of the windowsill, gathering up a handful of snow. It was (unsurprisingly) chilly, but I was surprised at how fluffy it was.

The ride back from the restaurant was much slower than the ride out, and I clung to Taro tightly a few times as the cab slid and swerved through the snow. The driver seemed calm, which was somewhat reassuring, but it still spooked me when the car wasn’t fully facing forward while traveling forward.

We had just passed the Aura Mart, and I was beginning to relax a little, when we hit our final challenge: the hill leading up to Yamaku. It didn’t look like anyone had driven it, and it certainly hadn’t been plowed yet. The driver gamely tried to force his cab up the hill, but it kept fishtailing and backsliding. Fortunately, there weren’t any cars parked on this stretch of the street, so we didn’t hit anyone, but we also didn’t make any progress.

After the fourth attempt at the hill, the taxi driver pulled over to the side and put the car into park. He turned to look back at us. “I’m so sorry, but I don’t think I can go any further. Is there any other place I might take you tonight?”

I glanced at Taro. “Hotel?” I murmured quietly.

Taro shook his head. “I, um…I already tried to book a hotel for tonight. For Christmas. To make a full night of it. But every place is full.”

“Ugh. Right.” All those other romantic couples had gotten there before us. I twisted to look out the back window. The Aura Mart was a good four or five blocks behind us. From here, it would normally only be a twenty minute walk back to Yamaku. With canes, usually, but I could lean on Taro if I had to.

“Shall we hoof it?” I suggested. “We’re almost there anyway.”

Taro grimaced. “I dunno, Molly…”

I poked him gently in the side. “Come on, where’s your sense of adventure?”

He sighed. “I just don’t want you to get hurt.”

“I’m tougher than that.” I rapped a knuckle on my thigh. “I’m half metal and plastic, anyway.”

Taro rolled his eyes.

“Besides, where else could we go? A manga cafe?”

“If they’re even open.” Taro sighed. “All right. Let’s go for it.” He turned to the driver. “How much?”

The driver waved this aside. “I couldn’t take your money, I didn’t get you to your destination. Are you sure you’ll be all right in this?”

“Sure,” I said sturdily, giving him a confident smile. “We’re tough as nails.”

Twenty minutes later, I was singing a different tune. “Whose stupid idea was this anyway?” I asked irritably as my feet tried to slide out from under me for the umpteenth time.

“Yours,” huffed Taro as we leaned into the wind, trudging up hill.

“Couldn’t be, I never have ideas this bad.”

“Of course not.”

I hung on tighter to his good arm. “We’re going to die out here, aren’t we?”

“Don’t be ridiculous, it’s not that far to go.”

“I’ve never been so freaking cold in my life.” I shuddered as another gust of wind blew down the back of my coat. “Never shoulda left India.”

“Well, just think of it as a new experience for you.”

“Freezing to death? I’ll pass, thanks. Have you ever been this cold before?”

“No. But I’m better insulated than you are.”

“At least my legs aren’t cold.”

He choked back a laugh. “I just hope your prosthetics’ joints don’t get wet and freeze.”

I groaned. “Crap. I hadn’t thought of that possibility. Gimme your pants.”

“This really isn’t the time for that.”

“Your loss.”

“I’d lose a lot more if I took off my pants. There are some parts of my anatomy I don’t want to contemplate in conjunction with the word ‘frostbite.’”

“I don’t want to contemplate any portions of my anatomy getting frostbite. Even my synthetic ones.”

“True, that.”

“How much further, d’you think?” I looked up from obsessively tracking the ice patches on the ground to gauge where we were, but nothing looked familiar in the flurry of white.

“Eh…probably ten minute under normal circumstances, so…fifteen? Or so? We’re not actually moving that much slower than usual.”

“Bugger!” My feet slid out from under me, and my hands slid off of Taro’s arm. I landed gracelessly on my ass in the snow. It padded my impact less than I might have hoped. “Ow. My bum hurts.” Taro leaned over to hoist me back up, but I waved him off. “Just a sec, as long as I’m down, I want to take off my shoes.”

“Pardon?”

“My feet have better traction than these shoes.” He looked nonplussed, and I gently reminded him, “They aren’t going to get frostbitten.”

“Oh. Yeah. Of course.”

Shoes off, he helped me stagger back up to my feet, and I beat as much snow off my dress and coat as I could. I took a few tentative steps and smiled. “I should’ve done this from the start.” I still wasn’t what I’d call stable, but my feet were better than slick leather shoe soles.

He snorted. “Most people don’t think of taking off their shoes as the first step to walking through a blizzard.”

“Yeah, well, we’re definitely not ‘most people,’ are we?” I banged my shoes together to get the snow off of them, and shoved them into my coat pockets, one on each side. I resumed my death grip on his arm. “Forward, march!”

“Yes, ma’am.”

I still didn’t like walking on snow, but at least I no longer felt in immediate danger of cracking my coccyx with every step. I looked back at one point and giggled. “If anyone comes along soon and sees our footprints, they’ll think someone was walking barefoot through the storm,” I said.

“Well, you are,” Taro noted.

“Yeah.” I glanced around at the neighborhood we were walking past, the lights on the houses looking specular and pretty through the falling snow. “It’s almost a pity no one will come out and see them before they get filled in.” Taro laughed with me.

We’d gone for almost ten minutes without mishap when I heard the sound of an engine ahead of us. I looked up and peered through the white veil that surrounded us. “Is someone actually driving downhill in this mess?” I asked Taro incredulously.

“Sound like a recipe for—shit!” He jumped in front of me, dragging me around in a half-circle as he did so. I stumbled and ended up leaning against him for support as a truck with a plow zoomed past, spraying snow and slush to the sides of the road as it went. Taro’s huge bulk made a perfect screen for my smaller form, and I barely got splashed at all.

The truck past, I pulled back from him a bit to see him staring down at me, eyes wide. “You all right?” I asked.

“Are you all right?” he echoed. “S-sorry I had to j-jerk you around like that.” He was gasping a little, and as I watched, he shuddered, too.

“No problem, really, thanks for saving me. But you—” He shivered again, and I had a momentary worry about a heart attack or something.

“C-can I have my hand back for a m-m-moment?” I transferred my supporting grip to his suit coat, and he reached back with his hand to wipe an impressive amount of slushy snow out of his hair. “That’s f-f-freaking c-cold!” he exclaimed. I was relieved to realize that his shivering and stutter was from the cold, not heart failure.

I let go of him altogether, and said, “Turn around.” He did so, and I couldn’t help but giggle at the sight. “Sorry, sorry! It’s just…” His back was almost pure white, despite wearing a black suit. I reached out and brushed off as much of the snow as I could.

“At least we’ve g-got a clear road to walk on, now,” Taro observed. He wasn’t shivering quite as much, but he was still obviously chilled.

“Then now is the time to really march,” I said. “Let’s get you into a hot shower.”

“No argument here,” he said, as he turned to face back uphill and offer me his arm. We clambered through the pile of snow the plow had put between us and the road, then we both sighed a little in relief to be walking on the much clearer road. It still was pretty slippery, but not as bad, and we made it the rest of the way to the guys’ dorm in less than ten minutes.

By that point, I was beginning to overheat, despite the snow; walking uphill always took a ton of energy for me, and we’d been moving a little faster since the plow. Taro had also stopped shivering, for which I was grateful.

We stopped at his room to ditch our coats. “Come on, you can join me in the shower,” he said.

“Really? What if someone comes in?” I had no burning desire to slog my way over to the girls’ dorm to bathe, but nor did I feel like putting on a show for someone other than Taro.

“The only other guy on this floor right now is Shu, and he’s over at the girls’ dorm with his girlfriend.”

“Good enough for me.” I grabbed a couple of towels and he got his toiletries kit.

As we headed to the shower, he said, “Actually, I think almost all of the guys who are staying here for a few extra days are at the girls’ dorm.”

“Well, none of them have your lovely large bed to play in,” I said, then enjoyed watching his already pink ears turn pinker.

Once in the shower stall, we both stripped in record time, Taro for once not letting shyness at being seen in full light slow him down. My dress, once unpinned at a few key points, just slithered off my body.

Taro’s skin was disturbingly pale with cold, and his groan of relief as he stepped under the hot shower was almost sexual, he sounded so happy. I sat on the changing area bench and pried off my legs, then slid down and crawled over to join him. The heat was heavenly, and for a minute I just sprawled out on the floor at his feet, letting the hot water that bounced off of him warm me up. He considerately turned on the hand-held unit, and used it to spray my prostrate form while he soaked in the heat coming from the wall shower head.

I smiled up at him, somewhat amused by my point-of-view. “I can’t believe this is the first time we’ve bathed together.”

“Yeah, well, normally the dorm showers aren’t so empty.”

“True.”

As he continued to spray and warm me, his gaze roamed up and down my body, and his smile grew larger and larger. “You are so so beautiful,” he murmured happily.

I couldn’t help but laugh a little nervously at that. I was starfished naked on my back on the floor, and although I didn’t usually get too hung up on my stumps being visible to him, I felt a little more exposed than usual. And I was sure that whatever was left of my make up was running down the sides of my face. I pushed myself up to sitting, leaning back on my hands, and flipped my soggy hair back behind my head. “You sure you don’t need to get your eyes checked?” I teased.

His answer was to lower himself to sitting beside me, then he handed me the hand-held so he could pull me close. He kissed me gently, almost reverently. “Nope. Never.” I snuggled into his comforting bulk, and he chuckled and hugged me closer.

“What’s funny?” I asked.

“I was just remembering something you said a little while ago.”

“What’s that?”

“We’re definitely not ‘most people,’ are we?” he repeated. It took me a second to recall when I’d said that, right after taking off my shoes to walk barefoot through the snow.

“Hmm. True.” I kissed him. “And I’m glad for it. Because ‘most people’ are nowhere as near as special to me as you are.” I thought for a moment, and amended, “Actually, no one is as special to me as you are.”

“I love you,” he said tenderly.

I smiled up at him, reveling in the warmth in his gentle eyes. “And I love you.” I giggled happily, then added, “Merry Christmas.”

“Merry Christmas.”
Last edited by Lap on Wed Jan 13, 2021 3:58 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Scarred Muse Hanako and Rin.
Avenues of Communication: Shizune suffers an accident.
Home: Hanako & Hisao at University, sharing an apartment with their friend Lilly (on Ao3).
One-shots

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Feurox
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Re: Lap's One shots & misc - New Entry 12-30-2020

Post by Feurox » Sat Jan 02, 2021 9:18 am

A pleasure to (re)read! Seriously, a wonderfully sweet (not quite too sweet) story, and I mean, of all people, I LOVE seeing Molly get some, uh, love!

Happy New Year Lap and Psychicspy! Hopefully we see more brilliant stories from the two of you this year :D

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Re: Lap's One shots & misc - New Entry 12-30-2020

Post by PsychicSpy » Mon Jan 11, 2021 2:26 pm

This is so cute! Thank you for the wonderful gift! I really enjoyed the direction you took it with Molly and Taro rather than one of the main characters (fandom or otherwise)
Feurox wrote:
Sat Jan 02, 2021 9:18 am
Happy New Year Lap and Psychicspy! Hopefully we see more brilliant stories from the two of you this year :D
Happy New Year to you as well! I hope so too. Hoping to get more stuff out soon, maybe even start working on a route!

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Return

Post by Lap » Mon Apr 05, 2021 2:07 pm

I had been dozing lightly when the van turned onto the hilly road leading up to Yamaku. My chair had come a little loose on the long journey, and the sudden jolt of it sliding backward a couple of centimeters woke me. I must have made some noise, because Mom turned in the passenger seat and smiled nervously at me. “Almost there, dear.”

I nodded, and tried to smile for her sake but I don’t think I was very convincing. Her lips twitched in another aborted smile, then she quickly turned around to face forward, hiding her face from me.

I looked out the side window at the passing scenery. It was only vaguely familiar; I had rarely traveled outside of Yamaku’s gates. It was bleak and gray under the overcast sky, the pale green of spring’s emerging buds muted in the watery light.

The massive gate was unmistakable, and Dad pulled the van around to the stretch of curb that was ramped for wheeled access. Perhaps ironically, there were no handicapped parking spaces. The whole parking lot, I reflected bleakly, probably qualified as that. There were a couple of other cars offloading students and luggage, but no one else was at the ramp.

Dad shut off the engine, and heaved a sigh of relief. He was always nervous driving the van, still unused to the huge vehicle. Yet another guilt added to my tally of things I inflicted upon my parents with my condition. With my continued existence.

Mom got out of the van and opened the sliding door beside me, then pressed the button that extended the ramp on her side of the van. Dad got out and opened the sliding door on his side, and all of the warm air in the van was blown out by the crosswind. I shivered, and tugged my jacket closed, clumsily pulling at the over-large zipper pull to close it up around me.

The two of them began the process of unlocking my chair from the restraints that theoretically kept me from sliding around in the back during the drive. We exchanged short, practical words—“Grab this” “Slide this over” “Can you reach that?”—as they worked to free me from my automotive bondage.

Once unlocked, I powered up my chair and pivoted away from the ramp. It was more stable for me to back down the ramp than to go face-first. Mom hovered behind me, waiting to catch me should I topple over backwards, but of course I didn’t. My center of gravity was far enough forward and low enough to make this manner of egress stable. Nonetheless, I smiled up at her as I hit the pavement, and turned to face her. “Thanks, Mom,” I said.

“Of course.” She smiled back, and looked like she wanted to say something more, but then she turned and began closing up the ramp and the van.

I nudged my controller, and turned to face the campus. Aside from the lack of leaves on the trees, it looked much as I remembered. Not much had changed during my nine months in the hospital. Irrationally, that annoyed me. So much had changed for me, it felt like there should be some reflection of that in the world around me. I could see a few students walking, limping, or rolling around the campus, but no one spared us a glance. I was nothing unusual, just another katawa, come home to roost, I reflected bitterly.

Then I shook my head and took a deep breath. No, I couldn’t go down that path again. Self-pity would do me no good. My only direction was forward, I reminded myself sternly.

As if I could talk myself out of depression.

I sighed, and turned away from the campus. Dad was heaving my luggage out of the back of the van, and Mom was pulling the bags up onto the sidewalk.

“Hello! Welcome back!” came a cheery voice behind me. I pivoted my chair, and saw an older woman with a clipboard approaching us. It took me a moment to remember her name—Mrs. Noya, one of the school’s secretaries.

“Thank you,” I said, although I wondered if I was really welcome. She gave us a short bow, which I returned with a head dip, all I could manage.

She turned to address my parents, and I tuned them out, looking at the other students arriving for the start of the new term. I knew that there wouldn’t be anyone I knew—all of my class had graduated while I was still in the hospital—but still I irrationally hoped for a familiar face. But my hopes were in vain.

Grimacing, I turned back to my parents and Mrs. Noya. Mom was just taking a set of keys from her, and Dad was signing off on something on her clipboard. Mrs. Noya took it back and smiled again.

“Well, that’s everything. Welcome back, and I hope you have a good year.”

“It could hardly be worse than last year,” I said drily, then immediately regretted it as I saw all three adults flinch. “Sorry,” I muttered, flushing.

“Er. Yes. Well…” Mrs. Noya seemed at a loss for words, so she just bowed to us again, then turned and hurried over to another vehicle that had just pulled up. “Welcome back!”

Mom sighed and gave me a disappointed look. “Dear…” she began, but I cut her off.

“I know, Mom, I know. Sorry. I’ll try to keep a positive outlook on things.”

Dad pulled the last box out of the van and grunted. “I know that that can’t be easy, son, but…try?”

I nodded. “What’s my room number?” I asked, changing the subject.

Mom looked at the keys in her hand. “Fourteen.”

Ground floor, of course. Where all the wheelchair users were, to make it easier to evacuate us in the event of an emergency. “You wanna hook a suitcase to my chair?” I asked my father.

He glanced at the pile of my luggage, then nodded. “That would be helpful.” I had what I thought were a ridiculous number of bags and boxes, but Mom had insisted I bring everything but the kitchen sink. I turned my chair around, presenting the back to Dad, and he hooked a rolling suitcase’s handle onto the back with a bungee cord.

I found my new room without problem—it wasn’t as if the dorm had changed in the past few months. One advantage to my new room was it had a bathroom, instead of having to use the communal bathrooms. Probably because other students tended to get grossed out by the bowel-care needs of paraplegic students.

My parents spent a couple of hours helping me unpack, then it was time to say our goodbyes. “You know you can come home to visit whenever you want to, right?” Mom asked.

“I know. I will,” I said, knowing that “whenever I wanted to” would be never. “I’ll see you at summer break, at the very least,” I offered in appeasement.

Mom didn’t look pleased at that, but before she could say more, the alarm on my phone beeped. I suppressed a groan. It was time to empty my bladder. “Ah. Well, that may be a sign that it’s a good time for us to leave,” Dad said awkwardly. He’d never been comfortable dealing with my toilet needs. Self-catheterization was no picnic, but at least I didn’t feel any discomfort from the process. Of course, I felt absolutely nothing at all from my dick, bad or good, which was a whole other set of problems, but dwelling on that would just lead to more depression.

“Right.” Mom bent down and gave me an awkward hug. I tried to ignore the tears standing in her eyes as she stood up. I held out my hand to Dad, and he gingerly shook it.

“Be well, son,” he said solemnly.

“Of course,” I said, with false cheer. “They’ll take good care of me here.”

They both flinched at that, and with a few more murmured words of love, they fled. Closing the door behind them, I sighed and rolled into the bathroom. I pulled a catheter out of the accessibly low medicine cabinet by the toilet. “Could be worse, I could be female,” I reminded myself, as I prepared to shove forty centimeters of slick plastic tubing up my urethra.


________________________


The next morning after breakfast I rolled out of the elevator onto the third floor, and rolled down to room 3-2. It felt odd to be back in the same room, but unfortunately I wouldn’t have the same teacher. Teachers at Yamaku stayed with their class for all three years of high school, so my old teacher was starting afresh with a first-year class this year. And everyone in my new class would have been together for two years already, unless there was another late arrival, like me.

Several people looked up at my entrance, but no one said anything to me. I vaguely recognized one guy, but I couldn’t remember why, or a name to go with his face. There was a desk with no chair in the front row, where the sleepy blue-haired girl used to sit. I cautiously maneuvered myself into place, bumping into the desk behind me as I did. Fortunately, whoever sat there wasn’t in class yet, so I didn’t disturb anyone. I smiled and nodded to the albino girl sitting to my left, but she just stared at me for a moment, then looked away.

Great. My reputation had preceded me.

I busied myself getting my books and pens out of my book bag. The last few students trickled in, and the teacher arrived just moments before the bell. She smiled when she saw me, an artificial looking smile, but at least not overtly hostile.

“So, welcome back, everyone, to the start of your third and final year. I hope you all had a pleasant spring break, and are ready to dive into preparations for the Center Tests.” That produced a collective groan from the class, which earned a smirk from the teacher. “Good, glad to hear you’re all looking forward to them.” My classmates chuckled at that; she and they seemed to have a good rapport. She paused and glanced down at something on her desk. “As I’m sure you’ve noticed, we have a new classmate this year.” She smiled at me, more warmly this time. “Would you like to introduce yourself?”

Déjà vu all over again. I nodded, and maneuvered out to the front of the class. I managed to get out without banging into any other desks along the way, which I hoped was a good omen. I spun in place, and gave my new classmates a wry smile. “Hello. Some of you may have heard of me as the idiot who got drunk and went diving off the roof of the academic building last year during the Festival...”

Scarred Muse Hanako and Rin.
Avenues of Communication: Shizune suffers an accident.
Home: Hanako & Hisao at University, sharing an apartment with their friend Lilly (on Ao3).
One-shots

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Feurox
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Re: Lap's One shots & misc - New Entry 4-5-2021

Post by Feurox » Mon Apr 05, 2021 3:19 pm

Twist still gets me, even second time reading it. Sad little tale... so, you know, thanks :roll:

Very well written as always.

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Lap
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Midnight Jellyfish

Post by Lap » Tue Apr 27, 2021 10:03 pm

This was inspired by a picture posted on Reddit, and a comment on there by user ni-kun. Thanks for the inspiration!

________________________________________________


I stood in the shower for a long time, chasing sleep. Hoping against hope that the heat and humidity would soothe and relax me enough that I might pass out. I tried to focus on the purely physical. The pounding sensation of the water against my shoulders, the heat and steam enveloping me. The white noise of the falling water drowning out all other sounds.

One of the joys of a dorm shower is that the hot water never runs out. I soaked in there for over an hour, until I felt like I was parboiled and ready to be served with butter. Emerging from the shower, one glance at the mirror showed that I wasn’t too far off—I wasn’t quite as red as a boiled lobster, but only just barely. I could feel myself sweating a little even after I dried off.

I was too hot to put on pajamas, so I just wrapped my towel around my waist for the short walk back to my room. It wasn’t as if anyone would see me. Even if I were to bump into Kenji, god forbid, he’d be hard pressed to notice if I were naked or clothed.

Closing my door behind me, I took off the towel and hung it on a hook to dry. I contemplated my pajamas again, then decided against them, tossing them onto the dresser.

I turned out the lights and crawled into bed. I glanced at my bedside clock—12:33 in the morning. Surely I could fall asleep now, right?

I wish. I was exhausted, my shower-broiled brain muzzy and incoherent, but sleep nonetheless eluded me. I tossed and turned restlessly, trying to find a position of perfect comfort that would let me fall asleep.

“Do you understand jellyfish?”

My eyes flew open in the darkness. What on Earth? I looked around my empty room, barely illuminated by moonlight coming in through the window, and shook my head. I must have just drifted off to sleep and dreamt that voice, or at least—

“As much as anyone can, anyway.”

Okay, no, I wasn’t dreaming that voice. “Hello?” I called out cautiously, as I sat up and turned on the bedside light. Looking around, I still couldn’t see anyone, no source for those weird questions. “Who’s there?”

“Me. Except I’m here, not there, so maybe not me.”

I finally placed the voice, and the style of answering. “Rin? Where are you?”

“Here. I just said that.”

It sounded like her voice was coming from under my bed. I hung my head over the side of the bed and peered underneath it, only to be confronted by a pair of paint-speckled bare feet. Looking up the length of the armless body, I was met by a pair of bright green eyes, glinting back at me in the dim light.

I just stared at her, struck momentarily speechless by my unexpected visitor. She just continued to stare back at me, her face its usual blank mien. Eventually, I managed to splutter out, “Why are you under my bed?”

“It seemed the safest place to be.”

Image

“What? Safe from—” I realized my head was beginning to pound, although only partially from hanging upside down over the edge of my bed. “Would you come out from under there, please?”

I sat up in bed, and wrapped the sheet tight around my waist, piling extra cloth over my crotch. Rin rolled out from under the bed and onto her feet in an impressive display of agility, then sat down on the foot of my bed. I scooted back toward the head of the bed, away from her, dragging the sheet with me. I felt slightly trapped by being naked. I wished I had at least a shirt on, to cover my scar, but for the moment I’d settle for covering more private areas.

Rin’s gaze traveled up and down the length of my body, but her attention didn’t seem to linger on my scar, to my relief. The tip of her tongue appeared briefly between her lips, then her face returned to a flat, unemotional gaze.

Her presence raised so many questions that I had trouble deciding where to start asking, and she seemed content to just stare at me silently. Eventually, I settled on, “Safe from what? Or who?”

“From you. I didn’t want you to step on my if I was laying on the floor, so under the bed seemed safest.”

I squeezed my eyes shut for a long moment, then asked, knowing I would probably regret it, “Why did you need to lay on the floor?”

“I was getting tired while waiting for you, but it seemed rude to sleep in your bed since I hardly know you.”

“And…why were you waiting inside my room, instead of outside?” Like a normal person, I wanted to add, but didn’t. Even by Yamaku standards, Rin seemed…unique.

“It seemed safer.”

Back to this. “From what?”

“Scarf-boy.”

Well, I could hardly fault her for wanting to get away from Kenji. It was my own damn fault for not locking my door while taking a shower.

I sighed. “And…why were you here in the first place?”

“I was wondering about jellyfish.”

“At”—I glanced at my clock—“one a.m. in the morning?”

“It wasn’t one when I got here.”

“When did—no, never mind. Why did you want to ask me about jellyfish?”

“Emi said Miki said you’re good at science.”

“Ah…I guess so…?” I was getting answers to my questions, but somehow I was still as confused as when I began.

“Actually, Miki said you’re a nerdy gaylord who always has your nose stuffed into a science book when you’re not busy brown-nosing the science teacher, but Emi took that to mean you’re good at science.”

I rolled my eyes. “Thank you, Miki,” I muttered.

“I’m not Miki.”

“I wasn’t talking to you.”

Rin looked around the room. “Is Miki here?”

“No, I—you know what, never mind.”

Rin shrugged. “Okay,” she said agreeably. Her gaze traveled up and down the length of my torso again, and again I wished for a shirt. “I guess your problem really isn’t in your pants,” she said. “I’m glad.”

I raised a hand to defensively cover my scar, then blushed. “You’re…glad?”

“Mm-hmm.” She leaned forward, her expression still flat. “I’m not wondering about jellyfish anymore. I’m more curious about what I saw when you took off your towel.”

“Rin!” I felt my face go bright red, and I worried for my blood pressure and my heart for a moment. “I…thought you were asleep.”

“I woke up.” She was on her knees, leaning closer to me, and I found myself pushing back against the headboard of the bed, as if trying to escape. Suddenly the sheet between us seemed like an awfully insubstantial line of defense.

She advanced on me, her legs going to either side of my out-stretched legs. She leaned forward, her face going to my waist level, almost giving me a heart attack. She grabbed the sheet in her teeth and sat back up, dragging the sheet with her. I squawked in wordless protest as it was revealed that the most brainless part of my anatomy was quite happy with this bizarre situation. I immediately did my best to hide the evidence, crossing my hands over my cock.

Rin stared at my crotch. “Move your hands away,” she instructed absently. Her gaze was riveted on my crotch, and I felt like a bird hypnotized by a snake, trapped by her intensity. Moving slowly, feeling like I was underwater, I moved my hands aside, revealing my erection.

Rin’s response was to cock her head curiously, and stare more. The only things moving were her eyes, flicking up and down, and my cock, twitching slightly in time with my elevated and erratic pulse.

After a half-minute of this frozen tableaux, Rin said, “Huh,” and climbed off the bed. I stared after her in confusion as she headed to the door.

“Rin? Wait, was that…is that all?” I asked, bewildered.

She opened the door and turned back to me. “No. I still have questions about jellyfish. But those can wait until tomorrow.” And with that she left, kicking the door shut behind her as she went.

“What?” I stared at the closed door, wondering if any of my medications could produce hallucinations like that. Had all that just really happened?

“Guess I’d better bone up on jellyfish,” I muttered to the now-empty room. Shaking my head, I turned off the bedside light and tried, once again, to fall asleep.

Scarred Muse Hanako and Rin.
Avenues of Communication: Shizune suffers an accident.
Home: Hanako & Hisao at University, sharing an apartment with their friend Lilly (on Ao3).
One-shots

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Feurox
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Re: Lap's One shots & misc - New Entry 4-27-2021

Post by Feurox » Wed Apr 28, 2021 5:13 am

Horror disguised as cute slightly sexual fun. Well, sexual in a seemingly academic way ;) Fantastic little story, and certainly does the art justice. Very nice indeed, well done Lap!

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Re: Lap's One shots & misc - New Entry 4-27-2021

Post by OtakuNinja » Wed Apr 28, 2021 6:59 am

I have to agree, that was a good one :lol:
Image
Emibro, Hanabro, [Lilly Lover], Rin Kin, Feminist, Two-timer
(2021, still an active fan. Planning to continue my KS YouTube series this year.)

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Re: Lap's One shots & misc - New Entry 4-27-2021

Post by brythain » Wed Apr 28, 2021 11:17 am

Rin's response was to cock her head...
Guess I’d better bone up on jellyfish...
Punditry.
Post-Yamaku, what happens? After The Dream is a mosaic that follows everyone to the (sometimes) bitter end.
Main Index (Complete)Shizune/Lilly/Emi/Hanako/Rin/Misha + Miki + Natsume
Secondary Arcs: Rika/Mutou/AkiraHideaki | Others (WIP): Straw—A Dream of SuzuSakura—The Kenji Saga.
"Much has been lost, and there is much left to lose." — Tim Powers, The Drawing of the Dark (1979)

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